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(Think Progress)   Justice Scalia: "The right of a 16-year old to keep and bear rocket launchers shall not be infringed"   (thinkprogress.org ) divider line
    More: Scary, Justice Antonin Scalia, originalisms, Chris Wallace, Fox News Sunday, Technological escalation, supreme court justices, second amendment  
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5962 clicks; posted to Politics » on 29 Jul 2012 at 9:33 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-30 07:25:17 AM  

odinsposse: Civilians can legally own explosive devices and automatic weapons but they are heavily regulated. Rocket launches, assuming we get a ruling saying they are legal to own, would almost certainly be regulated in the same way. Meaning, enthusiasts who have a lot of money will have them but they will be out of reach to most people including most criminals.


You also have the question of what a criminal would do with one, legal or not. Current restrictions are such that while Arnold would be able to get ahold of one if he really, really wanted to, but it's obvious to carry, the feds know you have it, etc... Personally I figure the 'most likely' economic crime job would be taking a bank truck, however the take on would normally be less than the cost of the weapon. Assuming you don't destroy the money with the shot, can't get into the truck after you shoot it, etc... Lots of risk for little reward; you're better off doing 'white collar' crime.

Otherwise you have assassinating people with it - and it's not been that much of a problem. Not even our Sentators and Representatives run around in armor all the time, as is somebody who *really, really* wants to could do it with a high power rifle, which is a couple OOMS cheaper. The president(and I'm not suggesting targeting him) is about the only one that's a 'big enough' target, but they deliberately keep a perimeter around him large and tight enough that you are highly unlikely to be able to sneak anything larger than a bullpup rifle within a mile of him, and his armor is good against that.
 
2012-07-30 07:42:22 AM  
Most criminals don't have rocket launchers. I think proportional weaponry is fine for citizens.
 
2012-07-30 08:01:10 AM  

pedrop357: Pincy: I think most sane people have no problem putting some reasonable restrictions on the right to bear arms. We aren't saying it is inconvenient. We are saying that it has its limits.

Cute.

"Reasonable restrictions" as defined by groups that have repeatedly called for outright bans, claimed that there is no individual right to own guns, etc. are suspect from the get go. Being a little more objective, it becomes apparent that the restrictions supported/proposed for instruments of the 2nd amendment would be inexcusable and unacceptable if applied to the rights enumerated in 1st amendment or other rights.

How tolerable would it be require a background check, 3 day waiting period, one-a-year limit, special licenses, hard age limits, etc. on abortion? Call them reasonable restrictions on the right to abortion and require costly licenses, fingerprints, zoning, office space, etc. restrictions. Then require patients to register for abortions so we can track them and impose a 5 day "cooling off period" and ensure that they abide by the "one-per-year" limit on abortions. All sounds perfectly reasonable, eh?

How about limits on bookstores? Federal licensing, fingerprints, store front requirements, one-book-a-month limits, magazine size limits, etc.?

The only reasonable restrictions on the 2nd amendment are the same type that would be reasonable for the 1st. They're not actually restrictions as much as they are limits on the protections of those rights.
You can say what you want, but the 1st amendment won't protect your right to utter "fighting words", threaten people, say things intended to cause panic, etc. You can't be gagged or denied entrance to some place because of what you might do. Similarly, you can't be denied the ability to buy, possess, or carry a firearm because of what you might do. You can be prosecuted for brandishing, discharging in populated areas, etc.


1. There already are several restrictions on abortions, similar to background checks and waiting periods and a limited number per year.

2. Are you actually arguing that there shouldn't be a background check? That we shouldn't investigate whether or not someone has a criminal record or mental health issues before purchasing an tool who's primary function is to harm and kill living beings? Because that's what it sounds like you're saying when you claim people would be up in arms if they had to get a background check before having an abortion. If so, you're just as crazy-extreme as people wanting bans.

3. Compare guns to guns when you're talking about guns. There's no need to compare guns to the 1st Amendment or 14th when there's already an amendment that addresses the issue of guns.
 
2012-07-30 08:15:45 AM  
Seriously if your ever in a situation like Aurora you WANT the guy to have a gun that fires 100 rounds a minute. In order to carry enough ammo to fire longer than 60 seconds dude would be having a hard time walking around.

Once the initial barrage is over you're free to kick his ass.

Of course that's assuming he's kept the weapon cleaned and in a state of readiness that it doesn't jam after the 10th round. Then you can kick his ass even sooner

Or that he can fire for a minute straight without overheating and causing a jam or pre-mature round firing.

Fully auto guns are only really cool in the movies, in real life they can be a pain in the ass when not used correctly, and even then they can be a big hassle.
 
2012-07-30 08:15:54 AM  

Dracolich:

The writers of religious texts didn't intend their quickly crafted rules to last and apply to today's world.



I don't know about that. When you are writing about the infallible word of God, I think it's pretty apparent that whatever rules you write are meant to be set "in stone". As an example, it's not like the Fifteen, err Ten!, Commandments were written with a number 2 pencil that could be easily erased. The fact that the symbology used was 3, err 2! stone tablets as opposed to a simple scroll is important to consider.
 
2012-07-30 08:29:30 AM  

vartian: A commentator raised an interesting question: "Aren't suitcase nukes technically hand-held?"


Well, remember that we have to look at everything through an 18th century mindset which, apparently, Scalia is uniquely able to channel. I'm guessing nukes are out because the founding fathers didn't know about them.
 
2012-07-30 08:38:57 AM  

doglover: vernonFL: This is something Scalia actually said, in the context of torture:

"Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles. ... He saved hundreds of thousands of lives," Judge Scalia said. Then, recalling Season 2, where the agent's rough interrogation tactics saved California from a terrorist nuke, the Supreme Court judge etched a line in the sand.

"Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?" Judge Scalia challenged his fellow judges. "Say that criminal law is against him? 'You have the right to a jury trial?' Is any jury going to convict Jack Bauer? I don't think so.

You mean someone used hypothetical argumentation in a logical argument? Color me shocked!


Seriously though, using ANYTHING from a play, movie, or TV show that's popular is about a million times more intelligent than some of the greatest thought "experiments" ever put to paper in philosophy.


Remember how on Battlestar Galactica they got more useful information out of a cylon prisoner that they didn't torture than did the crew of the Pegasus when they brutalized their cylon prisoner?

/Fiction - how does it work?
 
2012-07-30 08:46:07 AM  

doglover: vernonFL: This is something Scalia actually said, in the context of torture:

"Jack Bauer saved Los Angeles. ... He saved hundreds of thousands of lives," Judge Scalia said. Then, recalling Season 2, where the agent's rough interrogation tactics saved California from a terrorist nuke, the Supreme Court judge etched a line in the sand.

"Are you going to convict Jack Bauer?" Judge Scalia challenged his fellow judges. "Say that criminal law is against him? 'You have the right to a jury trial?' Is any jury going to convict Jack Bauer? I don't think so.

You mean someone used hypothetical argumentation in a logical argument? Color me shocked!


Seriously though, using ANYTHING from a play, movie, or TV show that's popular is about a million times more intelligent than some of the greatest thought "experiments" ever put to paper in philosophy. Big one I take issue with is "Swamp Man" where a being molecularly identical to you in every way magically springs forth from swamp muck and is completely identical to you except that it doesn't have a soul. And it's a serious cornerstone of arguments for and against duality. Diogenes would have spat on someone who herped that much derp back in Athens.


news.whoviannet.co.uk

Molecularly identical beings spring forth from the muck?

/not obscure at all
 
2012-07-30 08:52:04 AM  

Graffito: vartian: A commentator raised an interesting question: "Aren't suitcase nukes technically hand-held?"

Well, remember that we have to look at everything through an 18th century mindset which, apparently, Scalia is uniquely able to channel. I'm guessing nukes are out because the founding fathers didn't know about them.


Scalias mindset aside, you could go more recently since the amendment was never altered. The last redefining of weapon types legally was the NFA, which would likely call a suitcase nuke a destructive device (or maybe AOW?).
$200 tax stamp and you can license it, then hang it on a wall alongside your Excalibur sword and star trek phaser.
 
2012-07-30 08:53:24 AM  

snowshovel: When you are writing about the infallible word of God,


But most them weren't the word of "God" when they started, but the word of a local tribal god in a henotheistic structure, henotheism being "multiple gods exist, but mine is the best." So that doesn't hold up as absolute.
 
2012-07-30 08:57:10 AM  
He said there could be limitations to the 2nd Amendment. You could own a head axe, you just can't carry it around to scare people. We already have those regulations on arms.
 
2012-07-30 09:03:11 AM  

pdkl95: firearms: noun
a small arms weapon, as a rifle or pistol,
from which a projectile is fired by gunpowder.

ordnance: noun
1. cannon or artillery.
2. military weapons with their equipment, ammunition, etc.


(emphasis mine)
***

Doesn't anybody understand basic farking vocabulary anymore? The isn't and never has been a question or ambiguity about what the 2nd amendment covered: they said "arms", they mean arms. That is, small, hand-held weapons the militia - that is, all [male, of age] citizens - was expected to provide on their own when called to service. The (much-smaller) army would provide the expensive, cumbersome, dangerous ordnance such as canon during a conflict.

And sorry Scalia, it's pretty clear to most people an RPG is "military ordnance", not "arms", even if we now have the army provide the arms as well, instead of relying on the Militia to maintain that inventory.

/if the founders intended it to cover canon/etc, they would have said ordnance
//more telling, they *did not* say "weapons" in the generic, and instead relied upon "expressio unius est exclusio alterius" like they did everywhere in the constitution
//("the expressed mention of one thing excludes all others")


I'm not sure "ordnance" in that sense was in regular usage back then. Especially once you consider the fact that they didn't say firearms, but arms, a more generc form meaning, simply, weapons. It's not that I think they thought canon were protected, though it would't surprise me, but they didn't want to start a list. After all, they also still carried swords.

That being said, recall, too, that its lack of inclusion doesn't qualify as a priori proof that your right to it doesn't exist.
 
2012-07-30 09:08:26 AM  
This means that Scalia loses the Supreme Court election and Michael Moore becomes chief justice for life
 
2012-07-30 09:24:06 AM  
"If you can carry it in your hands, it's legal" is the dumbest interpretation of the Second Amendment I've ever heard. So, if somebody is born with one arm, he only has the right to "bear" one-handed weapons? The Amendment only applies to arms one can "bear," right? And, the Founding Fathers speak to you in your dreams, so they must have explained to you that the word bear means "to lift physically" and not "to operate" in the context of weapons. Moron.
 
2012-07-30 09:29:35 AM  
american conservatism - failed ideas for a failed country
 
2012-07-30 09:39:08 AM  

vygramul: I'm not sure "ordnance" in that sense was in regular usage back then. Especially once you consider the fact that they didn't say firearms, but arms, a more generc form meaning, simply, weapons. It's not that I think they thought canon were protected, though it would't surprise me, but they didn't want to start a list. After all, they also still carried swords.


The abolitionist Cassius Clay kept a working cannon in his office to keep the pro-slavery crowd at bay. It may have been a couple generations removed from the founders, but nobody challenged his right to own it.
 
2012-07-30 09:46:03 AM  

Three Crooked Squirrels: Bontesla: mrshowrules: vartian: A commentator raised an interesting question: "Aren't suitcase nukes technically hand-held?"

I support a 24 hour waiting period for suitcase nukes.

This seems reasonable.
I, too, support a 24 hour waiting period for suitcase nukes.

I suggest we vote on the motion before us.

All in favor say, "yay"
All opposed say, "nay"

Nay. Too restrictive. What part of "Congress shall make no law . . ." do you not understand?


Technically that only applies to the First Amendment.
 
2012-07-30 09:51:27 AM  

imontheinternet: "If you can carry it in your hands, it's legal" is the dumbest interpretation of the Second Amendment I've ever heard. So, if somebody is born with one arm, he only has the right to "bear" one-handed weapons? The Amendment only applies to arms one can "bear," right? And, the Founding Fathers speak to you in your dreams, so they must have explained to you that the word bear means "to lift physically" and not "to operate" in the context of weapons. Moron.


Well, yeah. The 2nd Amendment doesn't protect any right to use weapons. Keep, sure. Bear? Absolutely. Fire? Nope.

Makes sense, too... The original intent of the 2nd was to keep a tyrannical government from confiscating arms to suppress rebellion... but using weapons as part of a rebellion is treason, by definition, and wouldn't be constitutionally protected. Of course, by the time you've declared open war on the government, courts and legal rights are irrelevant. Hence, "using" arms is moot in the context of the 2nd Amendment.

Basically, all of the NRA "the Second Amendment protects mah right to kill intruding deer and hunt burglars" arguments are incorrect and are looking at the wrong amendment.

/according to the textualists
//the "living document" side would acknowledge that the Second has gained a new definition
 
2012-07-30 10:00:26 AM  
So, presumably Scalia would have no problem with a suitcase dirty-bomb.
 
2012-07-30 10:02:51 AM  
Awesome... I've always wanted one of these:

loyalkng.com

If that kid had one, that audience wouldn't stand a chance...
 
2012-07-30 10:06:10 AM  

vygramul: I'm sure I could convince Scalia to change his mind about the cannons. After all, there was private ownership of artillery during the time of the Founders.


There still is:

i46.tinypic.com

My mortar. I can put a 1 lb projectile at least 300 yards away. If I used projectiles that were actually aerodynamic, instead of just tin cans half-filled with cement, I'm guessing I could extend that by a third, at least.

Though I can carry the mortar short distances by myself, so maybe that would fall under the "bear" part.

/RTFA: He says "it will have to be decided".
 
2012-07-30 10:09:52 AM  

PsyLord: Awesome... I've always wanted one of these:

[loyalkng.com image 616x431]

If that kid had one, that audience wouldn't stand a chance...


You can buy those at the home depot.
/well, not exactly the same thing.
/you can get all the parts there tho, not that I want to give people any ideas.
 
2012-07-30 10:16:29 AM  

Bontesla: LibertyHiller: Bontesla: I'm going to pull a Michigan and determine that your vote doesn't count.

The yay's have it.
Motion passed.

[WTFamireading.jpg]

You're reading a reference to This (warning video). What I'm referencing starts at 11:59 - everything up to that is great background.


I assumed you were talking about PA 4, I just didn't know why it was relevant to this discussion.

The video (as described in the text) raises an interesting point; if Art. IV Sec. 27 has been violated, then that's a problem. I'm surprised that nobody's tried that argument in the courts. Even the Michigan Supremes should have a hard time swallowing that kind of behavior.

You do understand that if PA 4 is overturned, whether by the courts or by referendum, all that means is that the EFMs stay in place but with the powers outlined in the 1990 law, don't you?
 
2012-07-30 10:17:29 AM  

vygramul: I'm not sure "ordnance" in that sense was in regular usage back then. Especially once you consider the fact that they didn't say firearms, but arms, a more generc form meaning, simply, weapons. It's not that I think they thought canon were protected, though it would't surprise me, but they didn't want to start a list. After all, they also still carried swords.


It says "arms" precisely because guns aren't the only militarily useful weapon for an infantry soldier. It includes things like bayonets, swords, pikes, tomahawks, knives, clubs, bows, crossbows, etc. One could argue that grenades would be included in that also, because they were used back then, though not issued as commonly to the infantry as they are today.

One might infer that the founders used a general term for weapons because they had no idea what might be developed in the future and wanted them to be covered also, but that *MIGHT* be giving them too much credit. What 18th Century person could have envisioned a ray gun? Still, by using a general term instead of a specific one like "musket" or "rifle", or even "firearm", they intentionally left the door open for all sorts of weaponry to be included, and we have to assume they did that on purpose, at least as it pertains to weaponry of the common soldiery.

Oh, and by that reading, machine guns would be protected.
 
2012-07-30 10:25:55 AM  

Dan the Schman: 1. There already are several restrictions on abortions, similar to background checks and waiting periods and a limited number per year.


There are no restrictions on abortion or other rights that compare with those imposed/proposed on instruments of the 2nd amendment.

The closest you get is 24 hour waiting periods which are attacked as unconstitutional and anti-woman. There are no licensing, registration, background checks, etc. before a person can get an abortion. There are no one-abortion-per-year laws.

2. Are you actually arguing that there shouldn't be a background check? That we shouldn't investigate whether or not someone has a criminal record or mental health issues before purchasing an tool who's primary function is to harm and kill living beings? Because that's what it sounds like you're saying when you claim people would be up in arms if they had to get a background check before having an abortion. If so, you're just as crazy-extreme as people wanting bans.

Yes, I'm against the background checks. They haven't done any good and have served to simply add costs and bureaucracy to the exercise of a right. Background checks weren't mandatory before 1933

3. Compare guns to guns when you're talking about guns. There's no need to compare guns to the 1st Amendment or 14th when there's already an amendment that addresses the issue of guns.

I'll have to remember this when people talk about licensing guns the same way we license cars.

No, sorry. He's attacking an enumerated right, the justifications for which would be appalling if applied to other rights and effectively diminishes and dilutes some rights and leaves others more intact. The methods he thinks should be used to infringe (yes, infringe) on the 2nd could also be used to undermine the other enumerated an unenumerated rights. Sorry, all rights are equal and an attack on one is an attack on the rest.
 
2012-07-30 10:29:52 AM  

dittybopper: One might infer that the founders used a general term for weapons because they had no idea what might be developed in the future and wanted them to be covered also, but that *MIGHT* be giving them too much credit. What 18th Century person could have envisioned a ray gun? Still, by using a general term instead of a specific one like "musket" or "rifle", or even "firearm", they intentionally left the door open for all sorts of weaponry to be included, and we have to assume they did that on purpose, at least as it pertains to weaponry of the common soldiery.

Oh, and by that reading, machine guns would be protected.


One might infer that the founders used a general term for press because they had no idea what might be developed in the future and wanted them to be covered also, but that *MIGHT* be giving them too much credit. What 18th Century person could have envisioned blogging? ;)

The length of the Constitution alone should indicate that it was not intended to be taken as literally and explicitly covering everything within its scope.
 
2012-07-30 10:30:12 AM  

PsyLord: Awesome... I've always wanted one of these:

[loyalkng.com image 616x431]

If that kid had one, that audience wouldn't stand a chance...


Go buy one. They are not federally regulated and are usually classifed as for agricultural use....except in California....

In the United States, private ownership of a flamethrower is not restricted by federal law, but is restricted in some states, such as California, by state laws (cf. California Health and Welfare Codes 12750-12761, Flamethrowing Devices).[31]


/You know maybe we shouldn;t be telling all these farkers whats legal and whats not....they might have a heart attack or never come out from under their beds.
//if thats the case, maybe we should tell them.
 
2012-07-30 10:32:01 AM  

pedrop357: Yes, I'm against the background checks. They haven't done any good and have served to simply add costs and bureaucracy to the exercise of a right. Background checks weren't mandatory before 1933


That's absolute nonsense. Background checks make it more difficult for convicted felons to purchase firearms.
 
2012-07-30 10:32:17 AM  

dittybopper: What 18th Century person could have envisioned a ray gun?


Or the mind ray?
i232.photobucket.com
 
2012-07-30 10:36:19 AM  

Graffito: dittybopper: What 18th Century person could have envisioned a ray gun?

Or the mind ray?
[i232.photobucket.com image 256x171]


Yes to both, actually.
 
2012-07-30 10:37:48 AM  

GAT_00: I'm thinking about the militia aspect too. Now, and this is partially speculation, but militias of the day often brought their own weapons. These were normal people, bringing hunting weapons and pistols out. You wouldn't own an Army smoothbore, what's the point? Can't hit shiat with it, that's why they used to line up - so the bullet could do something. You'd own a bored hunting rifle, and let's just assume a pistol. But you would be unlikely to have anything else. There may be smoothbores in a arsenal somewhere, but they weren't in private possession.


Completely and utterly false. In New England, the heart of the Revolution, the most common hunting gun was a smoothbore fowler.

In fact, the only thing that was necessary to convert a civilian fowling piece into a military ready musket was to solder a bayonet lug onto the barrel, and that's just what they did. In some cases, they just used plug bayonets, which is basically a bayonet with a tapered wooden handle that can be jammed into a smoothbore fowler or musket (which again, are functionally identical).

Smoothbores were also commonly sold to the Indians as "trade guns". There were entire arsenals in Europe dedicated to producing smoothbore guns for the North American civilian and native market.

In fact, rifled guns were pretty much unknown in New England until the Revolution. They were only common from Pennsylvania and towards the south, in the predominantly German areas. In areas that were almost entirely settled by the English, the smoothbore predominated, and in truth is probably the better all-around gun: You can hunt big game with a single ball, or buckshot. You can hunt birds and small game with smaller shot, and you can use it as a common musket would have been used in a military fashion.

The New Englanders present were astonished at the capabilities of riflemen posted to the siege of Boston in 1775, commenting on how they could hit a target at 200 yards, something unheard of with their smoothbores. Their rifled guns, while relatively common in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia, were unheard of in Massachusetts, and the locals took great note of the fact.
 
2012-07-30 10:39:51 AM  

Theaetetus: The length of the Constitution alone should indicate that it was not intended to be taken as literally and explicitly covering everything within its scope.


Yep.
 
2012-07-30 10:42:09 AM  

imontheinternet: "If you can carry it in your hands, it's legal" is the dumbest interpretation of the Second Amendment I've ever heard. So, if somebody is born with one arm, he only has the right to "bear" one-handed weapons? The Amendment only applies to arms one can "bear," right? And, the Founding Fathers speak to you in your dreams, so they must have explained to you that the word bear means "to lift physically" and not "to operate" in the context of weapons. Moron.


The interpritation of 'arms' as decided in US v Miller*. The conclusion there was that the weapons deserving the most protection were those that were 'militarily useful', IE used by the military by individual soldiers. Now, as Miller had died and his attorney decided not to show up in court(as it was moot for his client), no evidence of the military use of short barreled shotguns was presented, thus the NFA rules on them upheld. In reality, even a half-hearted defense would have been able to dredge those up, what with trench guns in WWII.

Still, until the recent supreme court cases, one can easily argue that the Supreme Court itself decided that you should have more right to own a M-16 or M-4 than a single shot .22lr plinker, as the plinker has no valid military use while the M-16 line of weapons is issued to just about every soldier who might go into combat.

*And a screwed up case it was, Miller died before it hit the SC, and thus the federal government got to make it's arguments unapposed.
 
2012-07-30 10:51:09 AM  
This thread has been very informative.

I had previously underestimated the number of people who would launch into ill-informed and downright ignorant attacks on topics they have little or no understanding of. And do so loudly, and aggressively.

The amount of just plain wrong on both sides of this are staggering.

Fark, I am amazed.
 
2012-07-30 10:54:37 AM  
BTW, as an originalist textualist constitutionalist, THIS is the only valid interpretation of the Founder's original intent:

t-shirtguru.com
 
2012-07-30 10:58:48 AM  

Dracolich: The founding fathers didn't intend their quickly crafted rules to last and apply to today's world.

The writers of religious texts didn't intend their quickly crafted rules to last and apply to today's world.

The writers of todays laws, no matter how good they are today, do not intend for them to last and apply to the world centuries from now.

Always question when people have such a tough time with historical context. It's usually not their real reason for supporting/fighting something.


And there are ways to change them. Change the constitution, start a new religion, repeal/amend the law, Those are all available. Why do you think 9 old people should be given or doing a task that rule writers won't do.

The problem is that when something happens that you don't like, you want to short circuit the method.
 
2012-07-30 10:59:32 AM  

Firethorn: *And a screwed up case it was, Miller died before it hit the SC, and thus the federal government got to make it's arguments unapposed.


Something not often mentioned is that the government made the argument that Second Amendment rights only applied to those actively enrolled in the militia, thus was a collective right and not an individual one, and even though they argued unopposed, the Supreme Court implicitly rejected that argument.
 
2012-07-30 11:01:57 AM  

dittybopper: vygramul: I'm not sure "ordnance" in that sense was in regular usage back then. Especially once you consider the fact that they didn't say firearms, but arms, a more generc form meaning, simply, weapons. It's not that I think they thought canon were protected, though it would't surprise me, but they didn't want to start a list. After all, they also still carried swords.

It says "arms" precisely because guns aren't the only militarily useful weapon for an infantry soldier. It includes things like bayonets, swords, pikes, tomahawks, knives, clubs, bows, crossbows, etc. One could argue that grenades would be included in that also, because they were used back then, though not issued as commonly to the infantry as they are today.

One might infer that the founders used a general term for weapons because they had no idea what might be developed in the future and wanted them to be covered also, but that *MIGHT* be giving them too much credit. What 18th Century person could have envisioned a ray gun? Still, by using a general term instead of a specific one like "musket" or "rifle", or even "firearm", they intentionally left the door open for all sorts of weaponry to be included, and we have to assume they did that on purpose, at least as it pertains to weaponry of the common soldiery.

Oh, and by that reading, machine guns would be protected.


Entirely unrelated CSB:
One of my favorite tales from archeology was the story of how some scientists were looking for a famous sculptors workshop among the ruins. In the trash, they found a mug enscribed with something like "I belong to thassisus".
To me it was a humanizing thing. Because you had to think that even back then, some poor guy kept loosing his stuff at the office and he had to label it.

The underlying point is that while technology changes, humans don't. This is why some laws never seem to need altering. Every generation sees them as true and endorses the old rule because it's still applicable.
The founding fathers were not the first or last to deal with tyranny, but there were among the few to put their old king in his place and form a system that seemed be immune to it.
At the heart of that system was the ideal of giving power to the people. Political power, and physical power. Because they knew that a monopoly didn't serve the public good.
Arms were to be kept among the people because, ultimately, this was their nation. Not the kings, not the presidents, and not the congress.

If a thing is too dangerous for the people to own, perhaps it's too dangerous for the government. Congress should be leading the gun ban debate by example, and order their own guards to give up high capacity magazines and assault weapons first.

/Because of all the nuclear weapons ever made, The president is the only person to have ever used them in anger.
 
2012-07-30 11:13:07 AM  

BojanglesPaladin: This thread has been very informative.

I had previously underestimated the number of people who would launch into ill-informed and downright ignorant attacks on topics they have little or no understanding of. And do so loudly, and aggressively.

The amount of just plain wrong on both sides of this are staggering.

Fark, I am amazed.


Please enlighten us with your wisdom as I'm sure you have a law degree and specialized in Constitutional law.
 
2012-07-30 11:17:37 AM  

way south: The president is the only person to have ever used them in anger.


I'm not sure it is accurate to say that they were used "in anger". At least not in any connotation that suggest that Truman only did so out of some emotional response.

One can certainly say that the US President is the only person to have ever ordered the use of a nuclear weapon with the intent to kill.
 
2012-07-30 11:22:39 AM  

Pincy: Please enlighten us with your wisdom as I'm sure you have a law degree and specialized in Constitutional law.


I do not. Which is why you won't see me posting stupid things like "OMG! Scalia is a retard who might as well hold seances to divine the Founder's original intent!" or "The Founding Fathers definately unanimously envisioned that every citizen has a right to tanks!".

I'm all for a discussion of complex issues in a rational, informed way. Or even some good natured poking fun. But too much of this thread is just thoughtless parrot wharbgle by people who have chosen to replace informative discussion with reflexive talking points and insults .

There are plenty of good posts mind you, but the volume of the slap-fight brigade is particularly high.
 
2012-07-30 11:26:44 AM  

LibertyHiller: Bontesla


My reference wasn't to PA 4. So, it wasn't/isn't relevant to this discussion. It's okay. We all make mistakes :)

In regards to your surprise that no one has tried the argument in courts: In March/April, an Ingham County Circuit Judge granted a temporary order forcing Republicans to follow the procedures outlined. The judge also reversed the "immediate effect" of two pieces that were recently passed at that time. If I recall correctly, after the temporary order expired, the judge ruled in favor of the Democrats who launched the suit. The Republicans were planning on appealing the decision.
 
2012-07-30 11:30:25 AM  
Are we STILL doing this? Seriously guys. Debates over. Guns won. Sometimes that means a bunch of us will get killed by someone packing way too much heat. Price we pay. Get over it. It's not like if they were better regulated we'd be immortal anyway. This just means some of us may get to die in horrible pain with a bullet lodged in our spine. Can't change it.
 
2012-07-30 11:35:12 AM  

Scerpes: That's absolute nonsense. Background checks make it more difficult for convicted felons to purchase firearms.


In theory yes, in reality no.
 
2012-07-30 11:36:55 AM  

Bontesla: LibertyHiller: Bontesla

My reference wasn't to PA 4. So, it wasn't/isn't relevant to this discussion.


Maddow was talking about PA 4. What were you talking about?

In regards to your surprise that no one has tried the argument in courts: In March/April, an Ingham County Circuit Judge granted a temporary order forcing Republicans to follow the procedures outlined. The judge also reversed the "immediate effect" of two pieces that were recently passed at that time. If I recall correctly, after the temporary order expired, the judge ruled in favor of the Democrats who launched the suit. The Republicans were planning on appealing the decision.

So, the system of checks and balances worked?
 
2012-07-30 12:25:00 PM  
WALLACE: What about... a weapon that can fire a hundred shots in a minute?

SCALIA: We'll see. Obviously the Amendment does not apply to arms that cannot be hand-carried - it's to keep and "bear," so it doesn't apply to cannons - but I suppose here are hand-held rocket launchers that can bring down airplanes, that will have to be decided.

WALLACE: How do you decide that if you're a textualist?

SCALIA: Very carefully.


The thing is....rocket launchers are legal. If you don't like that, challenge their legality. If and when their legality is challenged Scalia claims he would decide the case very carefully.

Its an answer that the left is not happy with, yet if he claimed I would keep them legal the gun grabbers would be calling him an activist judge legislating from the TV instead of the bench.

Remember...giving a non definitive answer leads to outrage from the gun grabbers, giving a definitive answer in favor of rocket launchers would lead to outrage from the gun grabbers.

the only thing that would make the gun grabbers happy is if Scalia had said that nobody should be able to possess or own a firearm.....it's kind of disgusting that Americans wish to deny other people inalienable rights.

The gun grabbers are the group who feel a mental eval should be given to anyone who wants to purchase a firearm......why not a mental eval for those who wish to deny other people an inalienable right?
 
2012-07-30 12:45:42 PM  

Corvus: s2s2s2: MithrandirBooga: s2s2s2: Militias aren't people, my friend.

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

You bolded part has nothing to offer my bolded part. Read it until you understand that X is not Y.

So then why is it just recently how the 2nd amendment was interpreted changed. You believe for 200 years people got it wrong until just recently?


For 200 years we've been constantly changing and reinterpreting and revisiting the second amendment.

Anyone arguing that the 2nd is cut and dried isn't arguing in good faith. Anyone arguing that we should all be surprised that the 2nd amendment ISN'T cut and dried ALSO isn't arguing in good faith.

Anyone arguing that Scalia has been inconsistent on the issue is correct. Anyone implying that he's the only one is not.

The second amendment is one of the most ruled upon amendments in our constitution.

What is the actual "purpose" of that purpose clause? Are we intended to infer that "the people" being discussed are indistinct from the keeping of a well regulated militia? We know the founders agreed to not have a standing army, so what truly was the meaning of the militia? Does it matter if it wasn't meant to apply to the rights being discussed as belonging to "the people"?

Outside of the context of a well-regulated militia, who are "the people?" Is it each person or is all people?

When the amendment says "keep and bear" are they meant to be taken in-toto or are they intended to be separated (The right to keep arms, and the right to bear arms vs. the right to keep and bear arms)?

What does it mean to keep arms? What does it mean to bear arms? Exactly. And what counts as "arms"? Does the militia context in the purpose clause apply to the arms?

Case law has answered a lot of these questions. Inconsistently. Since before the turn of the19th century.
 
2012-07-30 12:52:12 PM  

BeesNuts: Anyone arguing that the 2nd is cut and dried isn't arguing in good faith. Anyone arguing that we should all be surprised that the 2nd amendment ISN'T cut and dried ALSO isn't arguing in good faith.


Which is the point I was making. These other people are pretending it is cut and dry it is not.
 
2012-07-30 12:53:38 PM  

Corvus: BeesNuts: Anyone arguing that the 2nd is cut and dried isn't arguing in good faith. Anyone arguing that we should all be surprised that the 2nd amendment ISN'T cut and dried ALSO isn't arguing in good faith.

Which is the point I was making. These other people are pretending it is cut and dry it is not.


So you are admitting that you do not argue in good faith?
 
2012-07-30 12:54:35 PM  

Corvus: BeesNuts: Anyone arguing that the 2nd is cut and dried isn't arguing in good faith. Anyone arguing that we should all be surprised that the 2nd amendment ISN'T cut and dried ALSO isn't arguing in good faith.

Which is the point I was making. These other people are pretending it is cut and dry it is not.


Which part of the 2nd amendment isn't "cut and dry" as you put it? What can be regulated or whether the people have a right to bear arms?
 
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